The Federal Bureau of Investigation is offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of a suspect who set fire at a Planned Parenthood in Watsonville, California.
Surveillance footage shows a person with a blue hoodie walking up to a corner by a window. This individual, whose face cannot be seen, holds what appears to be lighter fluid. The person seems to spray liquid on the wall, and lights it on fire. They then bolt from the scene as flames spread up and across the wall.
Watsonville police said this happened at about 4:00 a.m. on July 20. The flames smoldered for about three hours when someone noticed the smoke, and called 911. Authorities described the property damage as moderate.
But it is almost two months later, and there’s no known suspect, even though CalFire arson investigators, the ATF, FBI, and U.S. Marshalls are all involved. Watsonville cops voice the hope that someone will recognize the suspect through their physical appearance, clothing, and mannerisms.
Police haven’t said anything about a possible motive either.
Planned Parenthood offers services such as birth control, STD treatment, male sexual dysfunction, pregnancy care and, most controversially, abortion.
If that animus explains the arsonist’s motive, then it wouldn’t be the first (or most violent) incident in which a Planned Parenthood was targeted for this reason. Cops in Colorado Springs, Colorado said Robert Dear opened fire at a local Planned Parenthood in November 2015. He took the lives of police officer Garrett Swasey, 44; Army veteran Ke’Arre M. Stewart, 29; and mother of two, Jennifer Markovsky, 35. Though his case has yet to be adjudicated, Dear has admitted to the crime in open court, and called himself “a warrior for the babies.” He was declared incompetent to stand trial in 2016.
[Screengrab via Watsonville Police Department]
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